Photo Credit: Tom Szczerbowski/USA TODAY Sports
There it is – the big one. According to Bob McKenzie on TSN, the Toronto Maple Leafs have traded Phil Kessel to the Pittsburgh Penguins in a multi-player trade.
The full details…
Kessel, Tyler Biggs, Tim Erixon and 2nd in 2016 for Kapanen, Harrington, Spaling, 1st and 3rd picks in 2016. TOR retains $1.25M/year.
— Bob McKenzie (@TSNBobMcKenzie) July 1, 2015
More past the jump…
At first glance, this is a bit of an underwhelming return for Kessel, but I’m not sure the Leafs were every going to get that much more anyways. I’m not sure why Toronto would have to give up a second round pick, but here we are.
Kasperi Kapenen, 18, is a top prospect – let’s make no mistake about that. The 6’0, 181lb right winger scored 21 points in 41 games KalPa in Finland’s top league, as well as two points in four games for Wilkes-Barre Scranton in the AHL to close out the season. Kapanen was the 22nd overall pick in the 2014 Draft.
Scott Harrington, 22, is a nice piece, but lacks high-end potential. Last year, Harrington scored 12 points in 48 games for Wilkes-Barre Scranton, and went pointless in 10 games with the NHL Penguins. He’ll be very familiar to Leafs executive Mark Hunter, who had Harrington in London.
Nick Spaling arrived in Pittsburgh as part of the James Neal trade with the Nashville Predators. Spaling scored 27 points in 82 games for the Penguins this past season, and is under contract for one more season at $2.2M.
Adding another first round pick to the cupboard is also nice, even if it will likely be somewhere in the 20-to-30 range. Toronto now has two first round picks, one second round pick, and two third round picks in the 2016 NHL Entry Draft, and 11 picks in total.
In retaining salary, $1.2M will count against the Leafs’ cap number for the next seven years. This might be the most disappointing part of the deal, but it could be worse. Deep down, I find it annoying more than anything… I doubt it will actually become a hinderance for Toronto in the future.
It appears that the first round pick that Pittsburgh sent to Toronto is conditional and lottery protected, meaning that the picks exchanged by both teams could change if the Penguins don’t make the playoffs. Here’s the full details from the Penguins’ official site…
*If Pittsburgh qualifies for the 2016 postseason, Toronto will receive the Penguins’ 2016 first-round draft pick; and the Penguins will receive Toronto’s 2016 second-round selection. The second-round pick would be the one Toronto originally acquired from Pittsburgh for Daniel Winnik earlier this year.
*Should Pittsburgh miss the 2016 playoffs, Toronto will INSTEAD receive the Penguins’ 2017 first-round pick; with Pittsburgh getting Toronto’s 2017 second-round selection in return.
*If the Penguins were to miss the postseason the next two years, Toronto would receive Pittsburgh’s 2017 second-round draft pick and Pittsburgh would not receive a draft pick.
More to come!